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French genealogists have compiled some rather well done reports, especially considering when some of them were working. Here I list some of the family histories I have seen in my research that have impressed me as valuable examples.

War and the Passions of Patriotism

Franz Neumann’s introduction to The Spirit of the Laws, New York, 1949, pp. liv–lv.
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The Assembly of Notables - Alpha History

The manuscript collection is at the Richelieu site, but the books and many other offices are located at the new library at Site François Mitterrand, Quai François Mauriac, 75013 Paris.

Montesquieu and the Separation of Powers - Online …

When we turn from the description of the monarchy to the discussion of the English Constitution we must first consider two difficulties. What were Montesquieu’s views on mixed government, and what form of government did he believe England to have? Montesquieu’s treatment of mixed government is characteristic of the problems of interpretation he presents. At the beginning of his work, when enumerating the types of government, he did not consider mixed government at all. There is no direct mention of this idea which had been so important in English political thought for centuries, and which had also figured in the work of Hotman and others in France. Montesquieu writes of “moderate” governments, but these are the uncorrupted forms of monarchy and republic. At one point he seems to be saying that a mixed constitution is impossible, or at least that he knows of none that exists. Again the parallel with Bodin is striking. When Montesquieu turns in Book XI to his discussion of England, however, he adopts a very different approach.

Many of the sources in this bibliography I first learned about from reading Bird's article.
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Review of Witches and Neighbors - Max Dashu

Montesquieu was aware of the problem of ensuring that a system of government so nicely balanced should not result in complete deadlock, that the three bodies, King, Lords, and Commons, by being poised in opposition to each other should not produce merely a state of “repose or inaction.” But he dismissed the problem by arguing that in the nature of things they are forced to move (par le mouvement nécessaire des choses), and forced to move in concert. The question of whether he saw the State as an organic unity in which the articulated parts formed a single unit exercising the sovereign power, or whether he destroyed the unity of sovereignty by dividing it up into parts which were to be distributed among quite distinct, autonomous bodies, related to each other in a mechanistic fashion only, is probably impossible to answer, because it is doubtful if he ever formulated the problem in either of these ways. He seems to have a unitary view of the supreme power when he is discussing his three forms of State in the initial books of De l’Esprit des Loix, but there is little clue to his attitude in Book XI, Chapter 6. On the question of legislative supremacy he seems, though less explicitly, to hold much the same position that we attributed above to John Locke. The legislative function is logically prior to the rest in the sense that the executive and judicial functions are concerned with putting the law into effect; but the legislative branch must be limited in its power to interfere with the acts of the executive branch, otherwise the former will be able to wield arbitrary power. Montesquieu does not, however, emphasize the supremacy of the law, or of the legislative function, to anything like the extent Locke had done, and as a consequence there seems to be a good deal more disagreement between them on this point than was probably the case.

magistrates) yet the Parlements had no power to disallow laws.

This is a must consult work if you find any of your ancestors involved in the Parlement de Paris. Unlike the British Parliment, this was not a legislative body, but rather the highest court of appeal in France. It had many other administrative duties including the registering of royal acts to make them official. If your ancestors was a member of this court, then he would have been educated in canon, Roman, and customary law probably at a university like the ones in Orléans, Paris, or elsewhere in France. Basic information about the service of each person is provided and some genealogical details are given. As these positions became hereditary, and there was a lot of intermarriage between the families, it is often possible to trace several generations for some families in this work.

French Parlements The Crisis Of The Ol PDF Download

Europäische Stammtafeln: Stammtafeln zur Geschichte der Europäischen Staaten, Neue Folge. [European Family Trees: Family Trees for the History of European States, New Series.] First series by Wilhelm Karl, Prinz zu Isenburg, continued second series by Frank, Baron Freytag von Loringhoven. 17 vols. to date. Marburg, Germany: Verlag von J. A. Stargardt , 1978-.

The French parlements and the crisis of the old regime

I have not yet used this work, but I have seen it referred to in several other works and it appears to be highly regarded. Once I get a chance to use it I will provide further details. This is an example of a regional genealogical dictionary for nobles. Other such works exists and I hope some day to add some more selected examples to this bibliography.